Today I’m delighted to be hosting a stop on THE DEVIL’S WORK Blog Tour.
THE DEVIL’S WORK is the latest thriller from the fabulous Mark Edwards. Here’s the blurb: “The Devil’s Work follows Sophie Greenwood, a young mother who unwittingly accepts a job at the office from hell! Re-entering the workforce after having her first child, Sophie thinks she’s found her dream job in the marketing department of an iconic children’s publisher. But very quickly Sophie comes to find that someone is out to get her and that the dream job may turn out to be a nightmare. A mouse nailed to her front door… A stranger following her home in the shadows… Unexplainable whispers in the office late at night… As her life begins to fall apart at work and at home, Sophie must confront dark secrets from the past and race to uncover the truth about her new job… before it kills her. What is her ambitious young assistant really up to? And what exactly happened to Sophie’s predecessor?”
And now … THE DEVIL’S WORK by Mark Edwards – an extract:
As soon as the cold air hit her face she realised how drunk she was. Disorientated, Sophie took a wrong turn and ended up walking in a circle before she found the bus stop. As the bus rumbled through Brixton she became sure she was going to throw up so she disembarked. Home was thirty minutes away but the walk should sober her up a little, make the world stop spinning.
As she neared Brockwell Park she became aware of footsteps behind her. She turned but couldn’t see anyone there. Jesus, now she was hearing things. Since Josh – who was still in hospital, recovering slowly – had been attacked she’d felt more wary walking by herself. That must be what was happening now. She was jumpy because of what had happened to Josh. There wasn’t really anyone following her.
She crossed the street so she was close to the shops, where she felt safer. The jolt of adrenaline had sobered her up a little and she no longer felt like she might vomit. Soon, she was turning in to the street where she lived. She paused to rummage through her bag for her keys – and heard footsteps behind her.
Somebody was following her.
She started walking again, quickly, casting a look back over her shoulder. It was a man, featureless in baggy clothes, a hood obscuring his face. At least, she assumed it was a man – it was hard to tell.
The man started to walk faster too.
She found her phone and decided not to call Guy, in case it made the man run at her, so she punched out a short text instead, her fingers shaking, praying Guy would see it immediately.
On our road. Man following me. Come out!
She further increased her pace, scrabbling in her bag for her keys, unable to find them. The man behind her increased his pace too.
She panicked, running towards her flat, abandoning the attempt to find her keys. She would hammer on the door. But what if Guy had already gone to bed? He was probably sulking because she’d stayed out so late. He’d be in bed, Daisy beside him, with his earplugs in. He’d already told her she’d need to sleep on the sofa. Oh, God, the man was jogging behind her, so close, just twenty feet away now. He was going to grab her, pull her into the alleyway, rape her . . .
She reached the door and raised her fist to bang on it.
She threw herself inside, a sob breaking in her throat as Guy stepped past her. The man, whose features were still cloaked by darkness, stopped moving.
‘I’ve called the police,’ Guy yelled, going out onto the front step. ‘They’re on their way.’
The man stood still and silent for a moment, then turned and jogged away, back up the road. The darkness swallowed him.
‘Have you really called the police?’ she asked, after Guy closed the door.
‘No. Do you want me to?’
She shook her head. ‘What’s the point? He’ll be long gone by the time they get here.’
The next morning, Guy went outside to put the bins out. He came back in almost immediately, looking like he was going to throw up.
‘Those bins smell rancid, don’t they?’ Sophie said.
‘No, it’s not that.’ He rummaged beneath the sink and found the Marigolds and a carrier bag.
‘What are you doing?’
She went to follow him as he headed back outside but he said, ‘Wait there.’
She hesitated, then decided she had to see what it was. She heard a cry of disgust come from Guy, who was by the front door. She reached the doorway and clapped her hand to her mouth.
A large white mouse had been superglued to the front door, its nose pointing to the ground, tail stiff with rigor mortis. Its eyes were closed, front teeth protruding, a look of pain frozen on its face.
To find out more about Mark Edwards and his books hop over to his website at http://www.markedwardsauthor.com and follow him on Twitter @mredwards
THE DEVIL’S WORK is out today! Buy it from Amazon here
And be sure to check out all the other great stops on THE DEVIL’S WORK Blog Tour: